The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

January 6, 2014

Mike Pound: Working from home loses charm during Christmas break

I’m typing very quietly because I don’t want my family to know where I am.

I’m in my office at home — the same home that my family has been occupying the past 19 days. There are several advantages to working from home. You are never late. You can wear jeans without someone giving you that look that says, “Was there a memo about wearing jeans today that I didn’t get?”

But the most important advantage to working from home is that you get to be by yourself — unless your family is occupying the same home while you are trying to work. When that happens, not only do you have to talk to people, you also have to pretend to listen to what they say.

I don’t like that.

My wife and our 15-year-old daughter, Emma, have been on what I consider to be an unusually long holiday break. I don’t know why my wife’s work and Emma’s school decided to have unusually long holiday breaks; I just know that they did, and I’m slowly going crazy. If this keeps up, I’m going to start breaking down doors with an ax while yelling, “Here’s Johnny!”

That’s a reference from “The Shining,” in case you haven’t seen the movie. By the way, my wife thinks “The Shining” is one of the scariest movies ever made. If I ever want to creep my wife out, all I have to do is say “redrum” in a high-pitched voice over and over again. That’s not the only way I can creep my wife out; it’s just one of the easiest ways.

Several years ago, my wife and I were staying at the Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs, Ark. The fact that the Crescent is supposed to be haunted coupled with the fact that it sort of reminded my wife of the hotel in “The Shining” had her a bit on edge. We had been at the hotel for a couple of hours when I decided to take a shower before we went out to eat. When I came out of the shower, my wife was watching TV. Want to guess what my wife was watching? “The Shining.”

Wait. What was I talking about? Oh right, I was talking about my family driving me crazy.

I’m quietly typing this on Monday, the day that I was supposed to get my house back. But NOOOOOO! It had to snow and get really cold Sunday, and my wife and Emma got an extra day home from work and school, and it sounds as if Emma, at least, will stay home again on Tuesday.

I don’t think that’s fair.

I know, I know, life isn’t fair. If life was fair, the Kansas City Chiefs defense wouldn’t have forgotten that there are two halves to a football game.

Not that I’m bitter or anything.

Actually, having Emma home while I’m working isn’t much of a problem. Emma is a teenager, so basically all she does when she is home is sleep until noon, get up, go down to the kitchen, get something to eat and go back to bed.

Emma sort of has the hang of working from home. Ha! That’s just a working-from-home joke in case any of my bosses from the paper are reading this.

It’s having my wife home while I’m trying to work that is the problem. My wife didn’t think I worked very hard when I used to go to work at the newspaper. Now that I work from my home, she really doesn’t think I work, so she is constantly checking up on me.

Wife: “What are you doing?”

Me: “I’m working. Why can’t you understand that?”

Wife: “Because you have a solitaire game up on your computer screen.”

Me (in a shocked voice): “What? How did that get there?”

Wife: “I married a moron.”

It’s late Monday afternoon now, and because I’m typing this quietly, my wife hasn’t bothered me in a few hours. But if she does, I know what to say.

“Redrum! Redrum!”

DO YOU HAVE AN IDEA for Mike Pound’s column? Call him at 417-623-3480, ext. 7259, or email him at mpound@joplinglobe.com. Follow him on Twitter @mikepoundglobe.

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